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Long-term volunteers this week included our 4 yearlong volunteers, Jack Odhiambo, Inko Ndlovu-Mathuthu, Eric Douglas and Janis Ott; David King, crew leader; Lois Wenger, head cook; Mim and Leo Martin, assistant cook and crew leader; Don and Rachel Horst, Project Director and Office Manager.  Twenty-four weekly volunteers from PA arrived Mon. afternoon bringing our total volunteers for this week to 34 with the addition of Matt Miller Troyer and Glenn Geissenger here on Tuesday.

At Leogene English’s house we began with clean-up around the house, stripping off the siding and then painting and hanging new siding.  At Margo’s house we painted and hung siding as well as repaired the outside doors. Work at Goria’s house continued with painting and hanging siding, fascia and soffit trim.

Highlights this week included having an open house on Tues. during which some 75 people toured our building before receiving a boxed meal of roast beef, mashed potatoes, green beans, roll, and butter served out under the canopy by Red Lake Nation Department of Homeland Security Emergency Management.  Wed. evening an Ojibwe couple spoke to us about the Red Lake Nation.  Fri. we were treated to homemade soup from the folks at the Lutheran Church across the street from Gloria. When a paint roller and lunch bag went missing one day, it was determined that one of the neighborhood dogs had taken off with these items.  Saturday the long-term volunteers enjoyed eating our packed lunches at the Mississippi Headwaters at Lake Itasca and walking on the beach at Lake Bemidji State Park.

Next week we plan to finish at Margo’s house and replace the windows in Polly’s house.

The saying, many hands make light work was true this week with our big team from PA.  Most of the team were first time MDS volunteers but very capable and quickly stepped up to the tasks at hand.  What a delight to have the work on these homes move right along.  It was indeed a good, good week.

Rachel Horst for the Red Lake team.

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